Phyto Plage Protective Beach Spray ($22) is an idea that is long overdue - a sunscreen for hair. While we are frantically covering our faces and bodies from the sun's rays, it is all too easy to forget that your fine head of hair does not have inbuilt sun protection and can suffer damage from overexposure. Phyto Page promises, in addition to providing sun protection, to make your hair glossy and soft.

What I like most is an unusual ingredient that could be a natural sunscreen, calendula or marigold. The petals of this flower contain lutein, which  filters the high-energy, blue wavelengths of light from the visible-light spectrum, by as much as 90%. According to a Harvard research team, it may have the potential to act as a preventative agent against UVB-induced skin cancer and skin damage.

Ethylhexyl methoxycinnamate is the chemical sunscreen of choice here. Personally, I doubt whether hairspray ingredients are going to penetrate your skin (chemical sunscreens arouse concern because they produce excess reactive oxygen species that can interfere with cellular signaling, cause mutations, and lead to cell death) and so I would go with this anyway. For the same reason, I think it's safe not to worry about the parabens either for the same reason.

The various oils are mostly plant extracts such as castor or olive. Salix alba (willow) is widely used as a hair conditioner, as is rosemary, which will give hair shine. Since good looking hair isn't confined to the beach and the sun's rays will be beating down on us for many weeks to come, Phyto Plage Protective Beach Spray is a useful product for everyday.


Water (aqua), PEG 35 Castor Oil (Botanical Origin), PEG 8 Caprylic/Capric Glycerides (Botanical Origin), Ethylhexyl Methoxycinnamate, Polyquaternium 59, Butylene Glycol, Decyl Olive Esters (Botanical Origin), PEG 12 Dimethicone, Fragrance (Parfum), Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract (Botanical Origin), Salix Alba (Willow) Leaf Extract (Botanical Origin), Rosmarinus Officinalis (Rosemary) Leaf Extract (Botanical Origin), Phenoxyethanol (Preservative), Ethylparaben (Preservative), Butylparaben (Preservative), Methylchloroisothiazolinone (Preservative), Methylisothiazolinone (Preservative), Tocopherol (Botanical Origin)